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Board OKs RV park rules

Brookhaven now has a set of guidelines to follow in regards torecreational vehicle parks, which may help put an end to debatesaround the city board table concerning plans for a proposed RV parkthat were held up in September.

At the September 15 board meeting, aldermen had approved amoratorium on RV parks in the city in order to have the time toregulate the specifics of similar developments in the future. Thisheld up progress on one that was under way in Ward Five.

A committee of Ward Four Alderwoman Shirley Estes, Ward SixAlderman David Phillips and Ward Two Alderman Terry Bates came upwith ideas, some of which were derived from ordinances used byother cities. But Mayor Les Bumgarner had put the committeetogether to insure Brookhaven would have its own regulations tofollow.

The committee presented the updated proposal, with Estes sayingthe ordinance now addresses the length an RV can stay to beconsidered “temporary.”

Estes said the new ordinance says once an RV has been on the lotfor more than 90 days in any 12-month period, that amounts topermanent residency and a fine will be issued to the owner of theRV park.

“We probably don’t have any recourse on the RV owner,” shesaid.

In addition, the ordinance addressed requirements for a fencearound the park, which will need to be put up on three sides. Estesand Phillips clarified that the fence will need to be at least 8feet high and made of wood or some other material that cannot beseen through.

Estes also said the ordinance indicates that R3 zoning, which isdesignated for residential areas, will be applied to RV parks.

In the case of an emergency, however, there is an allowance.

When officials said there might need to be an out in case ofsome kind of natural disaster, or a family whose home has beendestroyed and need a place to stay while they build a new one, CityAttorney Joe Fernald suggested wording that puts the decision intothe board’s hands.

“In the event of extreme emergency circumstances, the board may,upon petition supported by emergency conditions, lengthen the stayfor individuals or groups of RVs,” he said.

The board approved the new ordinance 6-0, with Ward FiveAlderman D. W. Maxwell recusing himself during the vote.